Why should you care about writing well?
Your ability to write well dictates two things:
- The size of your audience
- The amount of money you make
People buy stories. It’s why you watch movies and buy Apple products.
A moving story will move you to tears, make you root for someone, and push you to believe in a brand.
Good writing that stirs emotion gives you the key to people’s hearts. If you strike the heart, you can sell anything.
"But I am not a writer."
Don’t sell yourself short. Start to recognise yourself as a writer.
Do it now?
Have you done it?
Cool, let’s move on.
What do these content have in common?
- Sales copies
- Blog posts
- Text messages
- Video scripts
- Instagram captions
- Facebook statuses
They all begin with writing.
You’re a writer even if you send a text.
Now that we’ve got this out of the way, let me show you how to write well with just a few adjustments to your writing.
Start with a purpose
What’s the one objective of your writing? Make that objective clear to yourself and your readers.
Decide on your intention before writing anything or risk sounding unfocused. Nobody likes to read a person’s ramble.
What’s your primary objective?
Your primary objective guides your writing, it’ll decide what you emphasise on and how you order the structure of your piece.
You can have multiple objectives but the one main idea must shine through your words. Your inspiring tweet can be entertaining, but it must first inspire your reader.
Tune these 4 dials to write better
Want to write better instantly?
You just need to work on these 4 dials:
A quick note: you can’t max out all 4 dials. Balance is the key and your primary objective will tell you what you need to tune up and what to tune down.
Read on to find out more about each dial and how to add each element into your writing.
When you write clearly, it’ll be easier for your readers to understand you.
Your sentences will become sharper as you remove any word that obscures your primary objective.
Unclear writing conveys an undecided mind and hurts your authority in your niche. It screams, “I don’t know what I’m talking about.”
How do you add clarity?
Remove the haziness and don’t make your readers guess what you’re trying to say.
Connect each cause and its effect closely. Your readers shouldn’t need to connect the ideas themselves, they’ll get tired from reading.
If A did B to achieve C, don’t reshuffle the order and add D and E in between before you get to the point.
Example of unclear writing:
I woke up with a headache. It’s Sunday. This will make me very unproductive today. The sentence is unclear because the reader cannot be sure if it’s the headache or the Sunday that’s making me unproductive
Do this instead:
It’s Sunday, I will be unproductive today because I woke up with a headache. Murder all ambiguity in your writing
Clarity is getting to the point, so get to it. What’s the point you’re making? Shine a spotlight on it.
This is where you make your primary objective of the writing loud and clear.
You give life to your writing when it’s simple to read.
Simplicity adds punchiness and pace to your writing. Your readers will be able to read from the beginning to the end without stopping.
How do you add simplicity?
Keep your writing tight. Do that by being economical with words.
Avoid jargon and don’t use pretentious word. Good writing doesn’t require unnecessary words. You don’t need to use a word just because you think it makes you sound smart.
You’ll dilute your message if you try to impress.
Use words your readers will understand. Don’t talk down to them, talk straight with them.
Use simplicity to make your writing more honest and sincere. Nobody likes a pompous prick.
Slash these words from you writing if they are:
- Redundant — E.g. sum total, sum and total mean the same
- Long when they can be short — Utilise = use, inform = tell, numerous = many
- Repetitive — Avoid repeating the same words if you don’t need to
When your writing has order and flow, it is elegant.
Elegance in writing happens when you arrange and structure your words with care.
Don’t mess your writing up with randomly placed paragraphs and words.
How do you add elegance?
Sketch an outline for your writing. One point should connect and build up to the next in a way that makes sense.
Begin a new paragraph whenever you’re shifting the emphasis. Keep one paragraph for each point you’re making.
Be strategic about where you use your punctuations. Don’t use a period when you should use a comma. Short sentences help to make your writing punchier but don’t be afraid to use commas when you need.
Read your writing aloud to see if it sounds rhythmical. Good writing has a good tune to it when you read it out loud.
Don’t just write words, write music.
Evocativeness is the salt to your writing. It’s the last piece of the puzzle that completes the picture.
Once you have improved your writing to be simple, clear, and elegant, you add flair to your writing with evocativeness. This way, you stimulate your readers with flavours and spices added to your words.
How do you add evocativeness?
Arouse your readers’ senses and paint a vivid picture with your words. Don’t just tell them a story, bring them into your world crafted by your words.
When you add evocativeness into your writing, you have the power to fire up imagination and stir the emotions of your readers.
Remove sameness from your writing and add variety.
If you’ve been using active sentences for a large part of your writing, a well-placed passive sentence will keep your readers engaged.
Simplicity, clarity and elegance sets you up for success, evocativeness is your weapon to capture the heart.
Have a genuine desire to connect with your readers
Above all, when you write, you should care deeply about your readers.
What will they get out of your writing?
Have you made your points clear and simple enough for them to understand?
Are your paragraphs arranged logically?
Do your words arouse your readers’ emotions?
I can give you all tools and tips to write better. But none of the writing tools will matter if your readers sense insincerity in your words.
Your desire to connect with your readers must be genuine.
Don’t alienate your readers with insincerity.
How do you keep your sincerity in check?
Read your writing back to yourself.
Do you sound authentic or pompous?
Do you believe the words you wrote?
Read, read and adjust accordingly.
Read from the eyes of your readers and with an open heart. Then, you will know what to keep and what to leave out.
You will find writing a pleasant experience as you improve. Keep writing until you fall in love with the process.
Don’t be obsessed over perfection if time doesn’t allow it. Like life, writing is about consistent refinement and not perfection.
When you start writing your next tweet or email, do this:
- Have a clear primary objective
- Tune your 4 writing dials
- Yearn to connect with your readers
You got this. Go write well and connect with people’s hearts.
Let your readers know why your story matters to them. Show them how you can be of service. Tell a story so moving that they have no choice but to buy your products.
Most of all, stir their emotions with honesty.